Buying my first set of winter tires for MY16 S60 T6 FWD Drive-e with sport suspension. What's better for a Boston winter: Michelin x-ice x13, Nokian Hakkapelitta R2 or Nokian WRG3? I'm just as concerned about packed snow traction as hydroplaning.
We've got the Nokian Hakka R2s. They are great tires for out this way. Plow through snow fine and work well on ice. A few other people on the V70 & XC70 P3 forum have the X-ICE and recommend them as excellent winter tires too. So I'd say either and you're not going wrong.
I don't like all season tires, so can't really comment on the Nokian WRG3s. Is there any reason you'd get all seasons vs a set of winter and summer ones on their own rims. It doesn't take too long to swap them out.
I currently have a couple of sets of Nokians, have used up a couple more, and I also have a car with the Michelin x-ice 3's. It's hard to really compare tires across time and over different cars, but my impression is that the Michelins are not as good as the Nokians, and it's a lot more questionable how their grip will hold up in the long-run. I've been able to trust my Nokians until they were heavily worn. I'd suggest the Hakka R2.
I have run the WRG3, Nordman R, and General Altimax Artics on our V70 FWD. We winter in Stowe VT and have considerable experience driving in all kinds of snow.
The WRG3 is hands down the best all season tire I have ever driven, particularly if you don't want to change out your tires and want to run one tire all year. If you're running dedicated snows the Nordman R has outstanding snow traction and a reasonably good value. I am currently running the Altimax Artics. The Altimax's snow traction is 10-15% less than the Nordman's at close to half the price. They are also remarkably quiet. All in all I staying with the Altimax Artics for the overall performance, quietness and value.
Can't go wrong with Nokian Hakkapelitta. I have driven them as a dedicated winter tire on my 850 over 15 years. Been through many varied winter conditions on the Canadian west coast, from inch thick ice to feet deep powder. It's an excellent non-studded winter tire. There is a reason why they are favored in the professional rally racing during winter conditions.
I don't have experience with the R2's, but I would expect better performance than the first gen Hakkapelitta that I have used.
Car&Driver just did a comparison test. Hakkapeliitta R2 for the win! I wish C&D would have included the Michelin Alpin 4's in the test - I have them on the Saab and they are quite good in both snow and cold/dry conditions.
I have experience with x-ice and WRG-3 on my C30T5.
From the beginning I'd run Michelin PSS summer and Michelin X-ice winter. Both of them wonderful tires for their seasons.
I've got lazy and decided to change to WRG-3.
I have around 46K km on them now.
In summer, nokian provide around 70% performance of Pilot Super sport - dry, and 50% wet, it spins on wet asphalt. After 25-30K km it become loud.
Winter performance, on dry surface it has around 80% of performance of x-ice, and 70% on snow.
So, I wouldn't buy nokian WRG-3 for myself again ( I have somehow "led" foot), but my wife on C30 2.4 is happy, so is my son on Accord V6.
If you have "spirited" style, IMHO, those tires aren't for you.
It should also be noted that Nokian tires are a rare commodity, not only because they aren't sold through discount outlets like Tire Rack, but also because of their comparatively low production numbers...
To be frank, any of the tires in that C&D review will be better than no-seasons when the temperature drops; props for being a responsible driver.
I had the 2 prior versions of the R2 on my Mazda (RSi, R.) There was a vast improvement in quietness and (reduced) squirm between the old and the new, so the R2 should be quite a bit better still. Nokians weren't available when I went looking around this time last year, so I have the Conti ExtremeWinterContact instead. Different car, different tires, just as much driving confidence in the cold & nasty...
I went with the Michelin X-Ice in 195/65-15 for my '00 S70. So far, no snow, just cold rain here in CT. They are very quiet and feel planted to the road. I got all 4 for $272 from Discount Tire Direct on black Friday. The R2's were $400. These are the first snow tires I've run that have NOT caused a loss in fuel mileage
I have both the xi3(vw wagon) and the hakka R2 (v50 t5 awd).
Both are great tires for dedicated winter use. Both are quiet, have lots of sipes and have performed well in colorado winters. Ive had the R2 for 1 full winter on mine and the xi3 on my wife's for about 2 months. I dont have any long term results yet since both tires are fairly new, but the 1 season on the R2 barely shows any wear.
The R2 is slightly more performance orientated, but that could also be the difference of the 55 vs 65 series sidewalls.
The greater directional tread of the R2 is better for clearing tracked out dense snow/slush, but still not as good as a mud tire on a 4x4.
Cant go wrong with either, both are pretty similar in price. If I were doing it again, I would definitely buy another set of R2 for mine, and perhaps the R2 for the wife's.